Never stop learning: Schools in Southern Leyte resume classes after Typhoon Odette

8 April 2022

Almost two years since schools closed down due to the Covid-19 pandemic, students and teachers from Bontoc Elementary School were looking forward to starting face-to-face classes again before Typhoon Odette struck Southern Leyte.  

Nica, a 12-year-old student in Bontoc, shared that she was really scared during the typhoon, “Our house was damaged, a coconut tree fell on the back of it.”  

As the class president and a hardworking student, she was really disappointed when even their modules were stopped after the typhoon. 

They were preparing to pilot the limited on-site classes at the start of 2022 when the super typhoon damaged their school buildings, equipment, and learning materials. Instead of finally going to school again, the students in the area had to halt their at-home modular classes due to the lack of electricity and cellular reception in the area.

Wood, Plywood, Furniture

Watercraft, Vessel, Vehicle

Tent, Person, Human

Tent, Camping, Person

Person, Human, Chair

IN PHOTOS: Damages to facilities in Bontoc Elementary School where UNICEF tents are set up as temporary learning spaces. 

Through the funding support of the United Nations Central Emergency Fund (UN CERF) and UNICEF Philippines, we are providing support to Nica’s school, and others in Southern Leyte so they can resume classes as soon as possible.  

Bontoc Elementary School is able to resume limited onsite classes, through the UNICEF tents set up as temporary learning spaces, and repaired water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) facilities to ensure children’s safety amid the Covid-19 pandemic.  

Person, Human, Clothing

Furniture, Table, Reception

IN PHOTOS: Nica and UN Philippines Resident Coordinator, Gustavo Gonzalez wash their hands at one of the repaired WASH facilities in Bontoc Elementary School.

Education, Disaster relief, Disaster risk management, Education in emergencies

Now that classes are resuming, Nica says that she’s looking forward to face-to-face classes again, “What I’m most excited about is seeing my friends and kids learning a lot.” 

Nica, 12, student in Bontoc Elementary School

“I want all the kids here to never stop learning. Even though we have challenges, I hope everyone can continue schooling even with modules from home,” says Nica.  

Plan International’s Super Typhoon Emergency Response is made possible with funding from the United Nations Central Emergency Fund (UN CERF) and UNICEF Philippines.